Willow Bend Mortgage Leans on Tech for Reverse Mortgage Expansion

Plano, Texas-based Willow Bend Mortgage, an independent mortgage lender serving the South Central U.S., recently adopted new loan origination technology to aid in expanding its reverse mortgage footprint.

The company recently announced that it has selected ReverseVision’s RV Exchange (RVX) as its loan origination software—a move that will assist Willow Bend’s dedicated reverse mortgage division of 15 specialists.

Currently, the company originates reverse mortgages strictly on a retail basis for now, but says a wholesale channel could be in its future if volumes continue to grow, according to Mike Hicks, reverse mortgage divisional manager for Willow Bend Mortgage.

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“At this time last year, we were preparing for Financial Assessment and just doing a handful of reverse mortgages,” Hicks said. “Now our pipeline is growing, and we expect volume to trend up over the next year.”

Now a full-year since the enactment of the Financial Assessment, Willow Bend is focused on growing its team as well as its HECM for Purchase business.

“Texas was the last state to get the HECM for Purchase, so our main focus is to get out there and educate Realtors, builders and senior borrowers,” Hicks said. “It’s my hope that HECM for Purchase will one day represent 50% of Willow Bend’s overall business.”

Willow Bend points to RVX’s user-friendly experience as one of the reasons behind its selection of the loan origination system.

As the flagship product of San Diego-based ReverseVision, RVX serves as a centralized exchange, connecting all participants in the lifecycle of a reverse mortgage by allowing them to log-in to a single system to share documents and information for each part of the loan process.

“We are pleased to help Willow Bend bring the benefits of HECM products, especially the HECM for Purchase, to new borrowers in Texas and surrounding states,” said Wendy Peel, vice president of sales and marketing for ReverseVision. “RVX provides a full suite of features and the wholesale infrastructure to scale with Willow Bend’s needs as it grows its reverse mortgage business.”

To date, Willow Bend is currently licensed to operate in 12 states. The company totals 16 HECM endorsements thus far in 2016 through March, according to industry data tracked by Reverse Market Insight.

Written by Jason Oliva

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